Terri's Reviews > The Stolen One

The Stolen One by Suzanne Crowley
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's review
Dec 13, 11

bookshelves: fiction, young-adult
Read from November 27 to December 12, 2011

Plot:

Fair. The beginning and middle were fine, but the ending dragged. This was compounded by the journal entries splashed in between chapters, which honestly had me confused. I couldn’t figure out who was who, and since the journal was supposed to be revealing Kat’s identity little by little, it really only confused me more and didn’t add to the plot. The information could have been placed inside the main story easily, and would not have been as confusing for me. (NOTE: This may also be partly my fault, because I read the first 1/3 of the book, dropped it for 2 weeks, then picked it back up again a few days ago. I forgot some of the details that were probably explained in the beginning of the journal.) Not a lot happens in this book. It’s mostly about Kat going to court, getting to know Queen Elizabeth and other secondary people, and piecing together little tidbits of gossip until she figures out if and how she and Elizabeth are related. Kat fell into Queen Elizabeth’s good graces with shocking speed. She was at court for a few days and all of the sudden, she’s in Elizabeth’s inner circle and having private walks with her and talking about Elizabeth’s family and feelings. It was all a little too fast.

Characterization:

Fair. I liked that Kat was highly skilled and mildly obsessed with embroidery. It added an element in the novel to focus on besides the familial intrigue, and rounded out Kat’s character a bit more. Kat was okay as a character. She didn’t show much personality beyond the embroidery and a mild curiosity to know who her parents were, and didn’t seem to mind when her various suitors were caught with other women because she didn’t like them much in the first place. Elizabeth was a much nicer character than I expected. The blurb on the back of the book has the one piece of dialogue on it where Elizabeth is showing a fearsome character, so I was expecting her to be tough and calculating, which she was, but more often she was warm, fiercely devoted to her maids, and afraid of being abandoned. It made me like her, and I was not expecting to.

Writing:

Fair. The language and imagery were all well-written, and the book flowed nicely. I felt that the author got caught up in the details of the relationships too much, and didn’t develop the main characters as much as she could have. This is probably because she is distantly related to the family, and she wanted to focus on fictionalizing the historical events, but since this entire book was about relationships, not events, it fell short of its potential. All in all, this book was okay. Not great, not bad. I probably won’t want to read it again, and I’m glad I got it from the library.
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